- Associated Press - Sunday, November 23, 2014

RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) - Rapid City residents are protesting a large Starbucks sign affixed to a historic downtown hotel, saying the sign makes a mockery of the building’s historical significance.

The 12-foot diameter lighted logo on the Hotel Alex Johnson has inspired an online petition urging its removal, the Rapid City Journal (https://bit.ly/1xYefGJ ) reported. More than 270 people have signed the petition.

“I have never started a petition, but as soon as I saw this, I was enraged for some reason,” Mark Wirtz said. “I just think it is over the top to be on this building and thought I couldn’t be the only one in town.”

One person who signed Wirtz’s petition said he or she was doing so because the sign “looks absolutely tacky.”

“Tons of money was just spent to make downtown look good and to slap a giant Starbucks logo on the side of such a historic building just makes it look horrendous,” the petitioner wrote.

The coffee shop in the hotel’s lobby was recently converted from a Seattle’s Best to a Starbucks. The city’s Historic Sign Review Committee approved the addition of the Starbucks logo in July. The committee denied a second 300-square-foot Starbucks sign proposal from the company that owns the hotel.

Representatives from the hospitality company declined to comment.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP’s earlier story is below.

Rapid City residents are protesting a large Starbucks sign affixed to a historic downtown hotel.

The Rapid City Journal reports (https://bit.ly/1xYefGJ) the 12-foot diameter lighted logo on the Hotel Alex Johnson has inspired an online petition urging its removal. More than 270 people have signed the petition.

Wart Wirtz says he started the petition because he was “enraged” when he saw the sign, which he says is “over the top.”

The coffee shop in the hotel’s lobby was recently converted from a Seattle’s Best to a Starbucks. The city’s Historic Sign Review Committee approved the addition of the Starbucks logo in July. The committee denied a second 300-square-foot Starbucks sign proposal from the company that owns the hotel.

Representatives from the hospitality company declined to comment.


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